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What would you buy, the jointer or the planer???.....

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  • What would you buy, the jointer or the planer???.....

    It's me again, What would you buy if you were in my situation, the jointer or the 13" planer???... I can only afford one right now, so I'd like get me something that would be more useful now. With my amateurish woodworking skills, I biscuit join alot. Mainly using 4" strips of pine (the standard HD stock) to make end-table and dresser tops. So basically I'd like to make flat pieces of wood that I can join properly, and flat pieces that I can run through my tablesaw (TS3612) without catching on the holes in the cast iron extensions because the piece might be slightly warped. Sorry for the long post, but I'd like to make a purchase based on the knowledge of this experienced community rather than purchasing something based on my lack of knowledge. Thanks for any info....
    Thanks,<br />Erwin<br />\"It\'s all in the grain.....\"

  • #2
    Go for the planer but be very particular with the wood that you buy. Try to find very straight wood. I started off with the planer but found I was still not happy and purchased the jointer. Now, with the help of some the people on this site (see my post below regarding the jointer problems!!!), I have straight wood and the projects are working out much better. This is my opinion - I still have a lot of learning to go!!!

    Good luck, T-45


    • #3
      I started with jointer. It will get you either (a) very good with a beltsander or (b) very frustrated.

      I usually recommend planer first. With patience and a bit of creative jigging, a tablesaw and planer will handle most problems a jointer takes care of.



      • #4
        I agree with the planer first. If you have a router and router table, you can clean up those edges for glue-ups.


        • #5
          I have to throw in with the "jointer first" crowd... hey, where did everybody go?

          You need to establish a starting point for doing precision work, and that means a flat face and a square edge, which is the function of a jointer. From there you can go to the TS if a planer is not available to make the other face/edge parallel. Using this technique you can achieve a 6" parallel face by running the jointed board through with the blade at max height (make sure TS blade is 90° & fence is square to blade) and making several passes raising the blade ~1" each pass. After blade height maxes out, flip the board end-for-end, keeping the jointed face against the fence. You can finish the non-jointed edge by running it through the TS in the same manner ... with the jointed edge against the fence.

          If you make wide boards by gluing up narrower boards, you're going to have to do some sanding or take it to a cabinet shop for final planing, although using biscuits for alignment and a flat surface (with the top DOWN and FLAT while clamping will minimize sanding/planing).

          In the long run, a jointer followed by the planer is the ticket.

          Just my $.02.

          Rotsa ruck & bee safe.

          Rodney J in TX


          • #6
            I too agree with the jointer first school of thought. the first two shop tools i bought were the table saw and the jointer. This will give you a great starting point, and if left with some high spots and no patience for the belt sander, bust out the hand held planer. from there nothing a good orbital sander wont finish off nicely.


            • #7
              I saw a summary that may help...

              A jointer gets the wood the right shape. Straight and square - cuts out the warp, twist, and other flaws - gets a good starting edge. (Can other tools do this? Of course. I had been woodworking 25 years before I got my jointer. But I wouldn't be without it now, especially as I focus on hardwood rather than primarily plywood.)

              A planer gets the wood smooth and the right size - for example, the second side exactly 3/4 inch away from the reference side. If the first side was uneven, the planer will make the second side uneven too. But just the right thickness. (Can other tools do this? Of course. But I sure use the thickness planer a lot working with hardwoods.)

              Which comes first?
              - If you primarily buy your lumber for a specific project, already the right thickness and already surfaced, neither - use your saw and sander for find adjustments.
              - If you want to "tune" the thickness of your pieces (e.g. 5/8 will look better than 3/4), then the thickness planer should be first.
              - If you often work from a collection of "stock" wood, or recycle wood, then you will use the jointer a lot to smooth and straighten a piece for cutting...


              • #8
                "If the first side was uneven, the planer will make the second side uneven too."

                Often written, and often challenged by myself and a few others. Without writing one of my infamous "book" responses, I'd like to say, not necessarily.

                Give me a tablesaw and a planer (and a couple shop-made jigs of course), and I can duplicate the work of a jointer on any stick worth using.



                • #9
                  I agree with Mr. Arbuckle on this one. I have the TS3612 and the TP1300 and have planned on getting a good jointer. But I have found that by using these two and a homemade router/jointer sled, I can 4 square anything up to 8/4 X 36" easily. Anything larger I can hand plane. FWIW.



                  • #10
                    being somewhat new to wood working ( i bought my table saw and jointer about 8 mos ago), i did a little research and watched a lot of the new yankee workshop prior to my purchase. i am not wanting to start a conversation about Norm, and i am not saying he is the know all be all, but one thing i noticed is that he always runs a piece of wood through the jointer prior to the thickness planer. so that leads me to believe that the planer is only going to be as accurate as the square side of the board. and the jointer squares the side better than the planer. my
                    two cents

                    \"A SHIP OF WAR IS THE BEST AMBASSADOR\"<br /><br />OLIVER CROMWELL


                    • #11

                      forgive me but doesnt that depend on which side ot the board is out of whack? the jointer will square an edge based on the side of the board that is against the fence? which means even if a board is bowed or warped...the jointer will square the opposite.
                      \"A SHIP OF WAR IS THE BEST AMBASSADOR\"<br /><br />OLIVER CROMWELL


                      • #12
                        I think we are talking about making things using wood which is of uniform thickness.

                        The only tool which can supply that easily is the planer.


                        • #13
                          I urge all of you to go to this link. It will explain why a few of us find the jointer to be a very important item.

                          Support Our Troops!


                          • #14
                            Sounds like this issue has been officially solved. Sell your car and buy both!!

                            All kidding aside, you are entering another phase of this endeavor, and regardless of which one you buy first, you will quickly want the other one.

                            Your question is largely a matter of opinion and you should carefully consider your wood supply source. If you are buying 3/4 stock from HD or rough stock from another lumber source. The planer opens up your options in terms of buying rough stock, but if your near term projects are made from "off the shelf" lumber, you probably would use the jointer more.

                            As I mentioned earlier, I bought the planer first but the jointer followed within a few months.

                            Good luck, either way you'll be back soon.